March 31, 2021

Mental Health at University of Illinois

I had the privilege of speaking at UIUC's CS Sail: "an annual event where high schoolers have the chance to explore computer science and experience what life is like as a computer science student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign."

Prior to the talk, I asked Heather Zike for mental health resources for UIUC Computer Science students. Heather is an absolute gem of an academic advisor in the CS department at UIUC.

Here's the mental health resources she wrote suggested:

Dr. Juvenal George. (juvegeor@illinois.edu) is a counselor that is embedded in Engineering Hall for students.  (At least, he will once we are back on campus but he works virtually now.)
This is the best list of resources I have found lately. It includes much more than just mental health but I have had some that have the need for these other resources too when discussing mental health.
The students started this Facebook group and have been working very hard to raise awareness.
The school is starting a training for faculty – the Faculty Mental Health Ambassador Program. The CS Mental Health Committee has designed a series of trainings for faculty to become an ambassador and better knowledge about mental health and the campus resources.  I am excited to see this kick-off soon.
One of the advisors in our office has had these events going on pre-covid but I think it has had some better attendance since covid.
Students can always check with their advisor or they are welcome to connect with me too (hlzike@illinois.edu).